APC youth protest and demand Shettima’s replacement

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All the young people of the Progressive Congress (APC) of the center-north organized a demonstration on Friday against the Muslim-Muslim ticket adopted by the party for the presidential election of 2023.

The youths, under the umbrella of North Central Progressives Youth (NCPY), demanded the replacement of the party’s vice-presidential candidate, Kashim Shettima, during the demonstration held at the Fountain of Unity on Friday in Abuja.

Armed with various banners, the demonstrators claimed that the choice of the former governor of Borno State as running mate was the only obstacle to the victory of Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the party’s presidential candidate.


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Some of the inscriptions on their banners read: ‘The APC presidential ticket must be for all religions’, ‘Shettima must leave now, All Christians say no to the Islamization of the APC presidential ticket’, Tinubu and Shettima must do what is necessary, it is our Right Constitution’, and ‘Do not destroy the unity of Nigeria’.

Speaking, the leader of the group, Musa Attah, who described Tinubu, as a “man loved and adored by Nigerians”, urged President Muhammadu Buhari to convince the former Governor of Lagos State to replace Shettima with a Christian for the sake of the party and Nigeria.

Attah said the president had etched his name in history because of his achievements in infrastructure, “fighting corruption and good governance”, but that he had to protect his legacy by striving to find a worthy successor who could consolidate his achievements.

“Mr. President, you have repeatedly promised to bequeath a democratic system with viable and future-proof institutional structures. True to your word, the country’s electoral system has been revolutionized,” he said.

“Your footprints will never be forgotten in the field of infrastructure. The fact that there is still a country called Nigeria is due to your resilience despite the mirage of security challenges. We are also facing the global economic crisis. Meanwhile, the trial of the suspended Federation Accountant General and many others have proven your zero tolerance for corruption. There are no sacred cows.

“Yet your greatest legacy will be your successor. Whoever succeeds you will either consolidate on some of those gains made over the past seven years or dissuade them all. As a progressive nation, we wouldn’t want the latter. And that’s why we’re asking you to rein in the ruling All Progressives Congress on its presidential candidates.”

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Attah added that Tinubu has demonstrated his ability over the years and is ready to build on Buhari’s legacy.

He said: “Tinubu’s alliance with Shettima could well be his undoing. In the face of unprecedented disunity, the same ticket of faith is a disregard for the fragility of the country and would further polarize the nation. Articles 14 and 15 of the Constitution speak of the federal character. The question is whether the choice of a Muslim-Muslim banknote corresponds to this federal character? As they say in law, you cannot access equity without having clean hands. He who wants fairness must do fairness. Is there fairness in this Muslim-Muslim choice?

“The rejection of the same ticket of faith should not be seen as a Christian objection but as a protest by every Nigerian in favor of democracy which guarantees freedom of choice, freedom of speech and freedom of worship. Nigeria is a secular state. Our ancestors were aware of this even before they designed the Constitution. And in making those choices, we have to be sensitive to people’s sensitivities. It should not be dominated by the people, to whom the power belongs.

“A Muslim-Muslim presidency would mean a sectional national ideology to replace the freedom on which Nigeria was built as a country. With Shettima, the APC implies that the Christians of the North are of no importance in the scheme of things. We have a huge Christian population in the North East and North West. In the Centre-North, Christians dominate. This is why Shettima must leave this post.

The group therefore urged Buhari to look beyond the surface and replace Shettima with a Christian, adding that only this can protect the president’s legacy with Tinubu as his successor.


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